Community

Thief escapes sentence after targeting the elderly and sick

Gloria Tunstall had her rings recovered by the police that were stolen from her home. Her engagement ring is still missing.
Gloria Tunstall had her rings recovered by the police that were stolen from her home. Her engagement ring is still missing. Alistair Brightman

AN ELDERLY woman has been left unable to trust people in her own home after her cleaner stole five sentimental rings, including her engagement ring.

Gloria Tunstall, 85, is one of four elderly or ill women, who had their jewellery stolen by Teena Maree Ansell while she was cleaning their homes in the Maryborough region.

Ansell, 51, escaped jail time despite pleading guilty in Maryborough Magistrates Court to taking thousands of dollars of jewellery from four people's homes.

The court heard Ansell was caught after her son sold a significant amount of jewellery to a pawn brokers, including a ring which had been reported as stolen.

Mrs Tunstall has made an impassioned plea to see the return of her engagement ring, given to her by her husband 67 years ago - the only piece of jewellery not retrieved after the crimes.

The Maryborough woman had been in hospital for 11 weeks when she received a call from her cleaning service after Ansell was discovered to have taken jewellery from another woman's home.

It was then she found the five rings missing.

The ordeal has left a mark on Mrs Tunstall.

"I feel terrible when people come into my home," she said.

Antigua woman Barbara Wilde, who is suffering terminal gall and liver cancer, also has trouble trusting people after Ansell stole a priceless ring from her home.

The ring, which was taken two days before her 40th wedding anniversary, was moulded from two rings from her mother and grandmother and given to her by her husband, an air force veteran, for their 30th anniversary.

She said she trusts the two women who currently help her but still ensures her purse and valuables are placed away when they come into her home.

"Now the worst thing is people don't trust (cleaners) in their home," she said.

Mrs Wilde was left stung by the theft.

"I may be ill but I'm not an idiot," she said.

The two other victims of Ansell's crimes were in their 80s and also the wives of returned servicemen.

Magistrate Dean Wilkinson on Tuesday sentenced Ansell to six months prison to be suspended for 18 months.

"The offence has been committed while you were in a position of trust provided to care for people who are vulnerable," he said.

Ansell has also resigned from her position at SunCare.

SunCare CEO Russell Mason said as soon as the organisation learnt of the crimes Ansell was stood down and all her clients contacted.

"We have been in operation now for nearly 45 years and this is the first time we have had any employee in this position," he said.

Mr Mason said SunCare has also conducted a review of their procedures for hiring staff.

Topics:  maryborough magistrate's court



Brisbane's arts and culture events centre stage

A CITY drenched in culture, Brisbane is again flaunting an arts and culture events calendar fit for a queen.

Homewares stores to fulfil your Instagram dreams

No Caption

You too can become an Insta-star with these fab stores.

Date nights under $50

Nothing is more romantic than a picnic with a cracking view.

NOT every date has to cost you a bomb.

Top 10 Brisbane experiences to cross off your bucket list

Do yourself a favour and get amongst the food truck scene. Eat Street is a great place to start.

A GOOD bucket list doesn’t have to span continents or cost millions.

Six mega sporting events you need to be at this year

Don't miss all the action trackside this season.

IF THERE is one thing Brisbane does damn well, it’s play host.

Insider’s guide to the best rooftop bars

Eleven Rooftop Bar is one to put on your hit list.

SEE the world from a different perspective...

Where to get your hands on the best wings

Try out these bad boys at Buffalo Bar.

IS THERE anything better than a wicked bowl of chicken wings? Nope.

Mayor says MP should apologise

Fraser Coast Regional Council - Mayor Chris Loft..

The mayor told Maryborough MP Bruce Saunders to apologise.

Young Bradley raises guinea pig stars of the show

Fraser Coast Agriculture Show 2017 - Bradley Davey,11, from Maryborough with his reserve champion guinea pig Chewy.

Chewy was crowned reserve champion guinea pig.

Jill of all trades awarded for 35 years service at Coles

Stock hand assistant Mel Sauer was recently recognised for her 35-years employment at Coles.

Stock hand is recognised for years of service

Local Partners

Young Bradley raises guinea pig stars of the show

Just over a year ago Bradley Davey’s parents bought him a guinea pig and since then he has raised Fraser Coast Agriculture Show stars.


What to expect at Birds of Tokyo's Ipswich gig

The band will perform at the Racehorse Hotel on Friday.

BAND member Glen Sarangapany talks music, pub grub and doing shoeys

Things to do on the Fraser Coast this weekend

Kayla Schmidt, Charlie and Nitro at this year's Million Paws Walk. May 15th, 2016

Find out when and where things are happening this weekend.

Marking Maryborough Hospital's 130th birthday

A PIECE OF HISTORY: Nursing director Trish Spreadborough shows what it would have been like to care for patients in the early days of the Maryborough Hospital.

Learn about the rich history of the Maryborough Hospital

Model Bella Hadid's see-through dress shocks in Cannes

JUST WHEN you thought you’d all of Bella Hadid’s supermodel figure — she gets her Cannes out on the red carpet of an AIDS gala dinner in France.

No room for morbid fans

Chris Cornell.

Fans want to stay in the hotel room where Chris Cornell died

Star Wars' 1977 Stormtrooper head banger confesses

A Stormtrooper is responsible for the biggest blunder in a Star Wars movie. Picture: Supplied

Man in most famous blooper in Star Wars history breaks silence

Lyn's knock-out show gets her to next round on The Voice

ONWARDS AND UPWARDS: Lyn Bowtell is through to the battle rounds on The Voice.

'It was bitter sweet to win like that'

Is this the talent you get when you limit electronics?

Cassidy Kilburn in the Get the Beat International Dance Competition.

Cassidy, 11, preparing for national dance championships

Dreamworld may supersize with 'Disneyland expansion'

Dreamworld could become a “more attractive and entertaining park”.

Report reveals progress on $319m airport upgrade

Aerials of the Sunshine Coast.Jetstar plane in front of the Susnhine Coast terminal, Sunshine Coast Airport.

Over two dozen government approvals needed for airport expansion

Lost dough leaves sour taste after company collapse

Kathleen and John Mahoney from Sugar and Spice Bakery were stung after the collapse of Cantro Pty Ltd and are still owed money.

Supermarket operator collapse leaves sour taste for bakery

Open for inspection homes May 25-31

Check out this weekend's homes open for inspection

How Toowoomba house prices compare in Australia

For sale sign in front of home.

Here's what $700,000 will buy you in Toowoomba, Brisbane and Sydney

One of Maryborough's most historic homes is still for sale

FULL OF HISTORY: Trisha Moulds is owner of the historic Tinana state known as Rosehill. The beautiful home is currently for sale.

It has been the scene of both joy and tragedies over the years.

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!